Senai kilangu (Tamil) / Suran (Hindi/Marathi) / Elephant Yam(English)- whatever you call it and however you cook it, it tastes just delicious! Usually it is made into a crisp varuval (fry) as a side dish. Some people half-boil it and then deep fry it with masalas. I've seen some Keralite dishes use this yam in their kootu curries. Backhome, My mother makes a yummy Senaikilangu Varuval (fry). You might wonder why I keep writing about my mom, often. Yes, I love my mom's food and got this love for cooking from her. She's the one, who turned me into a foodie. That's why you keep seeing a lot of my mom's recipes here. Though my mom's recipe for Senaikilangu is the tastiest (No, she doesnt deep fry! She grinds some wet masala and adds it to the Suran and still get a very dry result in the end!), I just can't seem to replicate it. So, I tried to work around and concocted a simple recipe myself. I haven't seen fresh Elephant yam in US, so I just have to satisfy my tastebuds with the frozen ones at Indian grocery stores. This recipe is very simple and tasty. With fresh ones, it tastes even better!
Frozen Suran - 1 packet
Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Olive oil - 1 tbsp
Boil 3 cups of water with the turmeric powder and add the frozen Suran. Half cook the Suran and drain this water. (I feel some of the nutrients are drained off when we drain this water, but then if I boil it with less water, which doesnt require draining, then the vegetable kind of irritates the taste buds on the tongue. So I boil the yam with lesser water and drain the water.)
Heat oil in a thick bottomed pan or a nonstick pan, and add the suran pieces. Add the salt and chilli powder and stir slightly, coating the suran pieces with the masala. On reduced heat, cook the suran pieces till they turn golden brown.